[THE INVESTOR] Business sentiment among European companies in Korea has worsened in recent years as they consider increasing labor costs and regulatory ambiguity as the key challenges facing them, a recent survey found on Jan. 30.
The European Chamber of Commerce announced the result of its own business sentiment survey that was conducted in November last year on 108 European companies representing 30,000 employees.
About 61 percent of the responding firms said they face challenges in doing business in Korea, as compared to 52 percent two years ago.
“The challenges ahead for Korea, and all industry players, both domestic and foreign, are considerable,” ECCK Secretary-General Christopher Heider said during a press conference in Seoul.
Despite all the concerns, 54 percent of them responded they are planning to expand their operations in Korea this year. Moreover, 44 percent of the respondents said the Korean market is strategically important while 47 percent said this strategic importance will not change in the foreseeable future.
“European firms view that economic policies implemented in 2017 were not that supportive for business but expectations that there will be a meaningful reform in 2018 increased from 5 percent to 21 percent,” said Jung Hun-taek, vice president of Roland Berger, a consulting firm that jointly conducted the survey along with the ECCK.
By Song Seung-hyun(firstname.lastname@example.org)